Cris Carter: Ohioan

BY foxsports • August 4, 2013

Cris Carter is from Ohio. If anyone wondered about that before this weekend, the newly minted Pro Football Hall of Famer left no doubt during his time in Canton for the induction ceremony. 

First there was Carter's induction speech on Saturday night, one he led off with a couple of "O-H" chants that were answered with enthusiastic replies of, "I-O", one of the signature cheers of Ohio State fans. 
He then welcomed everyone to Canton before declaring, "I happen to be one of the few people who've been enshrined in the Hall of Fame who was born and raised in the state of Ohio." 
The Troy native who prepped at Middletown later called Saturday the greatest day of his life and went on to apologize to Ohio State fans for losing his eligibility as a senior in 1987. 
"To all the Buckeye fans: From the bottom of my heart, I sincerely apologize for me signing with a sports agent and losing my eligibility my senior year," he said. "That's the only regret I have in my athletic career – I couldn't play for the Buckeyes as a senior."  
He thanked Ohio State teammates Keith Byars, Pepper Johnson, Kirk Lowdermilk, Jim Lachey, William White, Greg Rogan and Dwight Smith specifically as well. 
On Sunday night, Carter told another Ohio-themed story during a brief sideline interview during the NBC broadcast of the annual Hall of Fame game. 
When sideline reporter Michele Tafoya presented him with a copy of his birth certificate showing his name spelled, "Christopher," Carter quickly explained he had dropped the "h" in high school because he wanted to be more like Cris Collinsworth, a star receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals from 1981-88. 
"The Bengals were my team!" Carter said. 
Athough Tafoya sounded surprised by the answer, it made for some good TV because Collinsworth was in the booth doing color commentary with play-by-play man Al Michaels (who coincidentally has his own Cincinnati connection – he was the voice of the Reds on the radio in the early '70s). Tafoya might not have heard the story before, but Collinsworth said he had.